On Sunday (June 18), Amandla Stenberg publicly came out as gay in an interview with pop singer and close friend King Princess for Wonderland.
In the interview, Stenberg talks growing up queer, getting the hots for Mila Kunis, and finding LGBTQ inspiration from the likes Audre Lorde, Frida Kahlo, Prince, and Syd Tha Kid. Stenberg also discusses the lack black queer women in the LGBTQ representation and divulges about some new projects they are working on.
Stenberg is non-binary and, two years ago, identified as bisexual in a series Snapchat videos for Teen Vogue. They see identity as something “transient and ever-shifting” and approach it as an inevitable growth that intersects their work and personal life.
“I was so overcome with this pround sense relief when I realized that I’m gay – not bi, not pan, but gay – with a romantic love for women,” Stenberg said. “All the things that felt so internally contrary to my truest self were rectified as I unravelled a long web denial and self deprivation.”
Rising to popularity early in their career, the 19-year-old caught mainstream attention for their portrayal Rue in the blockbusting The Hunger Games franchise and were named as one Time’s Most Influential Teens in both 2015 and 2016. Since then, they have grown further into themself as an multi-talented individual.
“I was flooded with a sense calm and peace because everything that I struggled with or felt discomfort around finally made sense to me,” Stenberg said. “And once those floodgates opened and years pent up pain and shame were released, I found the freedom to live my best life waiting for me just underneath.”